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2 September 2014

China’s CNBM completes acquisition of Germany’s Avancis

Chinese building materials and glass manufacturer CNBM (China National Building Materials Group Corp) has completed its acquisition (announced on 22 April) of Avancis GmbH of Torgau, Germany, which manufactures copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) thin-film photovoltaic modules.

The firm continues to operate under the name Avancis, but now as a subsidiary of CNBM, headed by Dr Franz Karg (CEO) and Oliver Just (CFO), producing and distributing PV modules under the PowerMax brand.

Founded in 1984, CNBM is the largest Chinese building materials group, with 180,000 staff and a turnover of €30.8bn in 2013. In 2012 it acquired Germany’s CTFSolar GmbH, which provides production equipment and plants for manufacturing cadmium telluride (CdTe) thin-film photovoltaic modules. CNBM is now one of the largest manufacturers of highly transparent front glass for solar modules. The firm is also active in the acquisition, planning and construction of large PV systems via engineering subsidiary CTIEC. The Chinese government is currently pursuing a program for the development of solar energy and CNBM aims to play a key role via the acquisition of Avancis.

Avancis and its predecessor companies (including Arco Solar) started developing its PV technology in the early 1990s. The firm’s production process has relied on its second-generation technology, developed by its R&D lab in Munich and implemented in its production sites in Torgau. In January, Avancis raised its record for externally certified energy conversion efficiency for encapsulated CIS thin-film modules from an aperture efficiency of 15.1% (set in 2011) to 16.6% (for a 30cm x 30cm module), as independently confirmed by the US Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The firm’s latest manufacturing process is based on its third generation of CIGS technology.

Preparations to restart the improved production process at Avancis’ 100MW plant are beginning immediately, including new hires along the lines of the ramp-up plan.

Meanwhile, Avancis’ Tech Center in Torgau and the R&D center in Munich will continue their research, development and small-series production. The firm says that it is focused on the production and continuous improvement of PowerMax SMART modules to be used for ground-mounted systems and in the building industry.

The firm adds that a large majority of Avancis’ staff have accepted their transfer to the new entity. Avancis’ product guarantees remain unchanged for all current and new customers.

See related items:

Avancis receives general building approval for PowerMax SMART frameless thin-film CIS PV module

German CIS PV module maker Avancis acquired by China’s CNBM

Avancis achieves 16.6% efficiency record for encapsulated CIS thin-film PV modules

Tags: Avancis CIS PV module

Visit: www.Avancis.de

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